ESPN College GameDay will kick off the 2015 football season in Texas, when the Wisconsin Badgers and Alabama Crimson Tide face off at AT&T Stadium in Arlington on Sept. 5. GameDay made the announcement Monday on Twitter.
The Crimson Tide enter the season ranked No. 3 in the USA Today Coaches Poll after going 12-2 and losing to Ohio State in the semifinals of the first-ever College Football Playoff. They’ll be trying to avoid back-to-back losses to a Big Ten school.
The Badgers, ranked No. 18, went 11-3 last season. They’ll be looking for consecutive wins against an SEC opponent, ending last season with an overtime win over Auburn in the Outback Bowl.
The two programs have never played each other and Week 1 is a rare Big Ten-SEC regular season matchup. The last time Alabama played a Big Ten school in the regular season was in 2012, when it beat Michigan 41-14. Last season, Wisconsin lost 28-24 to LSU.
The Alabama-Wisconsin game will serve as an early claim to bragging rights for SEC and Big Ten fans over which conference rules college football. The Buckeyes won last year’s national championship for the conference’s first since time the 2002-03 season, when Ohio State beat Miami. The SEC has won eight national titles since then, including seven in a row.
Follow Adam Krohn on Twitter.